The aspirations of our children are above and beyond the comprehension of those deciding they don’t care about or desire a postseason. Some of these children aspire to compete in college. Recruiters do not pick collegiate athletes based upon how many participation trophies they have collected. They are recruited based on their abilities and the dedication that they put into their sport and the success they have at the highest level of competition.
A recent graduate received a scholarship to the University of Lynchburg for swimming. It was awarded based upon event times he was able to achieve competing against other top-level athletes. Athletes that pushed him to be better and work harder to be amongst the best in the state. Those contests enabled him to place top 10 in the state of Virginia. These postseason events at the state level are the motivation that drives these athletes. That one event and that opportunity to be recognized amongst the best in the state means more to these athletes than any event all season long. This story may be of only one individual, but it speaks for so many who have put in the time and effort year-round to hone their skills and find successes in hopes to continue to compete after high school. All done to not only represent themselves, but their teammates, their coaches, and their schools against the best Virginia has to offer.
Do not sit in the comfort of your homes or in the chairs of your elected positions and impose your thoughts on these children. These children have dreams that you are crushing for unsubstantiated claims. Currently, James Wood and Sherando have wrestlers that, prior to their season being canceled, were highly ranked athletes in the state, with the potential to bring home state titles. These titles do not come easy, but when obtained, show the level of dedication they have for themselves, their families, their coaches, and their schools. Their sport is represented at the Olympics. You are destroying opportunities and dreams of following in world class athletes’ footsteps. To compete for something more, rather than a ribbon that spells out “Participation.”
Just remember, you sit where you do because you were voted to that seat. As loud as we spoke out fighting for our children, those same voices will be louder when it comes time to re-elect. For when your seat comes around, each of us will fight harder to unseat you than we fought for the dreams of our children. Why? Because you put your own agendas in front of our children. Because you made it obvious that you do not care about our children’s hopes and dreams. Because you place more importance on your own conceived notions over reality. Because you do not represent the beliefs and desires of the people you were elected to represent.